A Guide to Supplements
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When it comes to supplements, there is so much information available that it can be quite overwhelming. Whether you take supplements or not is an entirely personal choice. I do however believe they provide an increased benefit when complemented with correct training and a quality diet. The following provides a brief outline of basic supplements that are often used to supplement a balanced diet and to maximise the benefits of physical exercise and weight training.
Ensuring you are getting enough protein in your diet is essential for building and maintaining a lean and strong body. Although you should ideally get as much of your protein intake from foods like meat and dairy etc, it can often be difficult to get all of your required protein intake from food alone. A high quality protein supplement is recommended in this case.
There are so many protein supplements available, however I recommend a whey protein. Whey protein has the highest absorption rate, allowing your body to gain the maximum benefit. It is important to note many of the cheap versions of whey protein brands heat the whey during processing, which damages the protein. You will find these proteins also often include other ingredients that take away from the pureness of the protein quality. I recommend avoiding proteins such as those available at supermarkets or chemists and stick to purchasing from a supplement store.
BCAA’s stands for branched chain amino acids. BCAA supplements are popular with individuals who are training to increase lean mass and performance. Taking a BCAA supplement before and during a work out will increase performance, reduce muscle fatigue, speed recovery, prevent muscle breakdown, kick start muscle growth and help the body absorb protein.
Since your body can not manufacture BCAA's, they must be supplied through your diet. These amino acids are needed for the maintenance of muscle tissue during physical stress and intense exercise. BCAA's function as anabolic agents, helping to prevent protein breakdown and muscle loss allowing the body to burn fat and not muscle. BCAA’s have been described as fundamental when training for muscle growth. And remember, the more muscle mass your body has, the more fat your body burns even when you are resting.
Fat burners are a common name for a thermogenic. A thermogenic supplement works to increase the body’s core temperature, which can raise metabolism and boost the amount of fat the body burns each day. Thermogenics are most often used by people who need a jumpstart to their weight loss program or have hit a plateau and find it difficult to lose those last few kilos of unwanted body fat.
Keep in mind that a thermogenic supplement is not directly related to fat burning; instead, a thermogenic supplement contains stimulant ingredients that will increase metabolism to encourage the body to use fat storages for energy.
As with all supplements there are many different available thermogenics. One of the varying factors between available products is the added ingredients. I suggest finding a fat burner that is rich in natural ingredients. Also be aware of the amount of caffeine included within each product.
If you want to find out if supplements are for you, have a chat to BSF Supplements Expert Joel Fraser. He and his specialist team are on hand to answer all your questions on supplements and how they may help you reach your goals.
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